Travelling by plane comes with its own set of rules imposed for safety and security. One of the most well-known rules is that there is strictly no smoking allowed on board. However, some passengers may have noticed that there is often still an ashtray in the toilets on board. Does this mean some passengers smoke on commercial flights?
This isn’t exactly the case, however, travellers lucky enough to fly on a private or chartered plane may be allowed to spark up when in the sky.
It largely depends on the person who owns or is operating the aeroplane and whether they are happy for smoking onboard their flight.
According to private jet charter broker AirCharterAdvisors.com: “The moment you decided to use a private plane for your travel was the moment you took control of your flight options.
“If your preference is to enjoy a cigar, pipe or cigarette while you are in flight, we will arrange for an aircraft that allows smoking.”
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As of 1997, the EU placed a ban on smoking on flights in all member states, meanwhile, the UK smoking ban of 2007 made it illegal to smoke in all enclosed spaces.
However, by law airlines must still have an ashtray in place.
Across most commercial airlines this is simply safety protocol incase an opportunistic passenger tries to bend the rules.
According to Cathay Pacific cabin attendant: “You’re not allowed to smoke, but some people still do it.”
She says she catches somebody about every six months, adding that the ashtrays provide a safe way to dispose of a lit cigarette if a passenger does choose to ignore the rule.
The ashtrays found in the bathroom are not meant to encourage passengers to smoke.
They are instead legal requirement for “minimum equipment” by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Smoking isn’t the only thing some passengers covertly get up to in the bathroom.
An anonymous passenger was also recently shamed by their fellow fliers after leaving the bathroom in a rather grotesque state.